HC Deb 16 July 1942 vol 381 cc1354-5
23. Mr. Wilfrid Roberts

asked the Minister of Pensions whether a widowed mother, previously dependent upon her only son, is entitled to the same pension rights as a wife in the event of the death in action of her son?

The Minister of Pensions (Sir Walter Womersley)

The award of pension to a mother is conditional upon need, and the rate varies with the amount of the support given by the deceased son or the amount which he might reasonably have been expected to give had he survived. The widowed mother wholly dependent on her deceased son would invariably receive a pension.

Mr. Roberts

Does not the right hon. Gentleman think that in the case of a widowed mother who was dependent on her son before the war it is time to end completely the means test and put that mother in the same position as a wife?

Sir W. Womersley

If a mother applies for a pension, we naturally have to inquire as to her means to give an appropriate pension.

Mr. Mathers

Is the Minister aware of the anger that is felt at the different treatment in this war from the last war in a matter of this kind?

Sir W. Womersley

No, Sir, I am not.